Monday, March 20, 2017

WHY I NEED A NEW DENTIST

Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

Back in 2012, the dentist I was seeing had such a strict attendance policy that I got kicked out for missing two appointments (I missed one because I was ill and called during the night to say I couldn't make my morning appointment, and I missed the second one because my GPS sent me to a fast food "restaurant" and refused to admit that it wasn't the dentist's office. I called to say I was lost and was told I was so far away that I couldn't make the appointment and it was my second missed appointment, so farewell). I was disappointed because I liked that dentist and his staff, but really? Two appointments and do not pass go? Do not collect x-rays and a cleaning?




So where to go next? I don't like to miss my every-six-months toofer cleaning.


If only I could find a dentist as devoted as the elf on Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.


Dude gave up a great full-time toy making gig, including health insurance and all the candy he wanted, in favor of fixing teeth.

No elves came my way, but I did receive an advertisement in the mail for a new dentist's office that was opening near my home. I called to ask if they accepted my insurance. Yes! was the enthusiastic response. I made my appointment.

Got to the office without any problems. It was a brand-new building with a Keurig in the waiting room, comfortable chairs, and many exam rooms––most of which were dark. They had just opened, after all, so they didn't have many patients. I liked the hygienist, liked the dentist. He wanted to replace some of my old fillings that I'd gotten when I was a child. Made sense to me. Some of those fillings were forty years old (amazing since I was thirty).

One of the billing people called my insurance company to check on coverage for the replacement fillings and told me how much I'd have to pay. Insurance covered most of it.

The appointment for the new fillings fell on Halloween. Everyone dressed up. The hygienists were all cats. The dentist wore a chicken head. All was well. I gave the office a stellar five-star review on Google.

And so the years passed. I kept my appointments and my teeth. With each visit, I saw the business grow. The exam rooms were no longer dark. Each one had a patient. Several dentists worked there, along with a large staff of hygienists and people to handle billing and appointments.  After a couple of years I had another procedure that required another small partial payment from me.

Then I went in for my second cleaning appointment of the year during 2016. Finished, with clean teeth and minty-fresh breath, I went to the desk to make my next appointment. The appointment and billing person looked at her monitor. I could see she was confused. Just a minute, she said, and dashed off to talk to someone in a private office.

She returned to tell me, We don't accept your insurance. We've never accepted your insurance.

To be continued.


Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug



31 comments:

  1. Nice cliffhanger! I just went to my dentist and he wasn't even there. He's expanding and has another office across the county, so I saw some other dentist that was there filling in. I miss my dentist in PA. Always the same hygienist. Always the same dentist. Never treated like a wallet.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. For the most part, I've had great experiences with dentists. The hygienists get to be friends with whom I catch up while they clean my teeth.

      Delete
  2. Replies
    1. It might get worse. You never know with a to be continued.

      Delete
  3. They never accepted your insurance? They're not demanding full payment from you now, are they? If so, see a lawyer. Really.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I'm confused, as you must have been!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was even more confused than I usually am.

      Delete
  5. I'm hoping this ends with "And then I woke up" because this is truly the stuff of nightmares.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Replies
    1. Hey, you've done that, too, buddy.

      Delete
    2. Yeah, just sittin' here at the library...

      Delete
    3. Then the comments have to end when the library closes--unless you sneak around and spend the night there so you have all the computers to yourself.

      Delete
  7. I am not a fan of the dentist they cost too much and I just all round do not like going at all so I generally don't go unless I really need to

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your medical care is covered, but not dental work?

      Delete
  8. Huh? Maybe he's like my dentist... my dentist is Chinese and even if your insurance doesn't cover it, he'll work with you. It's only him and that may be why. I love my dentist and hope I can find something similar in Canada. :)

    ReplyDelete
  9. What??? Maybe they're confusing you with someone else? A cliffhanger....oh my...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wish they'd confused me with someone else.

      Delete
  10. DUN DUN DUNNNNN.... is it a ghost dentist?!? Sounds spooky.

    (I dont know. I've had some wine.)

    ReplyDelete
  11. My dentist of 25 years recently retired. He's on the other side of town and I'd planned on selecting a dentist much closer. But then I met the new dentist and ended up liking him so I'll stay.

    ReplyDelete
  12. You need the kind of dentist I have. He is my brother. I've tried to pay him and his entire office staff burst into laughter. But we do pay my niece who is our hygienist. The business office gives us a 50% family discount. I have no idea what will happen in the near future when my brother retires. Looking forward to the next episode of your story. Linda@Wetcreek Blog

    ReplyDelete
  13. That's strange. But it's kind of nice when a clerical error actually works out in your favor. Hold on, I just re-read something, "The dentist wore a chicken head. All was well." Wha, huh!?! Nothing is well when the person in charge of your oral health is so careless and unimaginative as to choose a simple mask that will obstruct vision. Watch out for the warning signs.

    ReplyDelete

Got your panties in a bunch? Dig 'em out, get comfortable, and let's chat.